H.E. Mr. Ali Osman Mohamed Taha, Vice-President
25 September 2008
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ALI OSMAN MOHAMED TAHA, Vice-President of Sudan, said the current session of the Assembly was occurring at a very important time with regard to the principles set down in the Charter. Issues such as respect for the sovereignty of nations should be the focus of debate, as should reform of the United Nations, which had dealt with the many problems faced on the African continent since liberation from the yoke of colonialism. Underdevelopment and unfavourable market conditions must be addressed. Special threats against Africa also needed to be addressed, including the politicizing of the United Nations principles to affect the international order and the double standards that undermined the Organization’s principles.
He said Sudan was an environment with enormous resources and that peace in Sudan was a strategic necessity for the stability of the region. Nothing should be done to jeopardize the Government’s efforts to bring about peace. The Government must be allowed to carry out national projects for disarmament, demobilization, mine-clearing and reconciliation. The commitments made in Oslo must be honoured by the international community to help Sudan deal with the difficulties and obstacles in implementation. Sudan’s external debt should be cancelled in harmony with its ability to implement a comprehensive peace.
On the situation in Darfur, he said the problem was Sudan’s responsibility. A Sudanese initiative, based on the people’s views, would be the yardstick by which a resolution was reached. A proposal for an Arab Committee to supervise the peace had been welcomed by both the African Union and the Arab League. That would allow for full implementation of the peace agreement that had been signed on 5 May 2006. That African Union-led initiative had called for measures such as power sharing, all of which had the full support of the Sudanese Government.
Many steps had already been taken in that direction, including the extension of executive and legislative positions. “But the intransigence of the uncooperative elements” had increased as the Government carried out its obligations according to the principles of cooperation with African Union-United Nations Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID). The Government had full faith the Mission and a status of forces agreement was in place. The transfer of command from the African Union to UNAMID was proceeding according to plan with periodic coordination meetings held. On the humanitarian level, the Government was again fully committed to the effort, and was conducting implementation of measures in an exemplary manner with the follow-up mechanisms in place.
Therefore, at a time when the Government had made great strides to implement the peace and reconciliation process and its commitment had been guaranteed by the President himself, and when an election was planned take place in 2009, the issuance of an indictment against the man who had ended the longest war in Africa was detrimental to the peace process. Sudan fully supported the accountability that the indictment was intended to bring about, but the Government was already implementing measures towards accountability, and the International Criminal Court Prosecutor’s decision was “corroding” Sudan’s peace process. The Security Council should correct the error, to which numerous States had objected. Sudan wanted to get beyond bitterness. Therefore, realizing peace in Sudan and Darfur and the aim of the Court were “two different tracks that could never meet”. The Prosecutor’s decision must be reversed as soon as possible.